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tv   News and Public Affairs  CSPAN  September 16, 2012 6:30pm-8:00pm EDT

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>> they have promised to cut spending, but as the chairman said, they have reached the bottom of the barrel on the parts that's easy and vague, and some various agencies people don't think about very much. judging from what's happening on the campaign trail, they are quite ready to make a very explicit case about medicare and certainly not social security, which is the single largest program. so getting down to 15% of g.d.p., i think spending is something like 24% of g.d.p. with hundreds of millions of dollars in difference, they have to start focusing on these programs that are so politically difficult to cut. >> we asked where the leadership comes from that has been.
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where is the leadership for that? >> everyone warns of the consequences, but the public has not really seen action after several years of warning of the consequences. you don't hear them making that very specific argument for privatizing medicare these days. >> and the president is in the same position. he knows what must be done, but he can't make the case now for fear of losing the election. and again, once this election gets out of the way, there is a chance something could happen next year on this issue, and hopefully it can. >> let me go back to the conversation you had with mr. rogers about that. if this president does win the election, does he philosophically agree with this in -- such that he would take
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the leadership on entitlement cuts? >> i think he recognizes that there needs to be some substantial changes. i'm not sure if he goes -- i don't know that he agrees with the ryan approach which means that you fundamentally change the shape of the program. he has dabbled at the edges. a higher measure of inflation for social security so benefits don't rise so quickly. and he increased the retirement age for mead medicare. those things are not the kind of fundamental reform that republicans want, and frankly solves the problem as the baby boomers retire. >> so as we look to the fiscal cliff and all the decisions that have to be made after the election, is it possible to know now whether or not that is going to work effectively, or will it all depend on the outcome of the election? >> you know, i think a lot of
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people are hoping that they will come with an extension to somehow kick this can down the road once again. it is hard to tell whether people have the stomach to actually go over the cliff or not. there is a lot of sbre rattling over it now. but when push comes to shove -- also depending on the outcome of the election, it is hard to say what's going to happen. >> thank you to both of you for being here this week and for your questions of the chairman. i appreciate it. >> thank you. [captioning performed by national captioning institute] [captions copyright national cable satellite corp. 2012] klaxon both chambers of congress will be returning on wednesday due to the observation of rosh hashana on monday. though it's coming in the house after 6:30. disapproval aimed at blocking the obama administration's changes to the welfare law. also expected, a package of energy and entertainment bills aimed at boosting energy production and jobs. house live on c-span. the senate gavels in at 10:00
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a.m. wednesday to continue work on a veterans' jobs bill as well as take up a job funding the government for six months. for more, we spoke to a capitol hill reporter. >> senators spent the week to create job corps for veterans. where does that stand now? >> they claim to vote on the 19th. they will take off monday and tuesday for the jewish holiday and they will finally begin writing this on wednesday. >> who had objections to this? >> there were several reasons to stall. first of all, if you wanted the cynical view, the republicans were not going to give them anything. democrats control the senate. the bill is meant to increase hiring and job training for
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veterans, particularly those who have served in afghanistan and iraq. part of the problem with republicans said that there were other things the government should be doing. they said this was a political exercise that they do not as a really need the government's help. sen. rand paul is a real credit of this saying he would just block the bill entirely for various reasons. he wanted to stop american aid to pakistan until they free their position on the u.s.. this tied up the session all week and they appeared to reach a discussion and they will vote on the 19th. >> the house finishes up the continuing resolution. it will go to the senate now. what is the consensus on when the senate might get to it? >> they were talking about wednesday, thursday, friday.
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the senate wants to leave the to go home to campaign at the end of next week. there probably will not be a huge controversy over the six month extension. there will be heated debate in both sides will talk about how we have the stock this runaway spending, do something about the debt and deficit. >> what can be done? >> start with the bush era tax cuts that expire at the end of 2012. if not extend, then you know the top income-tax rate goes up to 39.6% and a second rate will kick in there. rates across the board go up. the obama administration would like to keep current rates for those earning under $250,000 and let the rate to go up for the
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rest. republicans say you do not raise taxes in the middle of an economic slump. that will be an enormous battle. that will not be resolved until maybe new year's eve. that's the first. then you have a sequester in january. that is the automatic spending cuts that the white house spoke about on friday saying the disaster was looming if the cuts go into effect. there is a way out. the way out is to fashion a budget plan that would avoid these costs. >> will that happen? >> possibly. we will see some very serious negotiations. >> david linemen for mcclatchy newspapers but a look ahead in congress. thank you. >> my pleasure. >> i think people like to see
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where politicians views have shifted over the years. i think people like to see whether romney in 1994 was campaigning for welfare reform, against welfare reform, they want to see what he was doing during the 2002 campaign or in 2007. people like to see how the politicians have evolved. there is an element to it that is almost a gotcha, but people are also thinking it could be interesting. isi'm trying to think why it that he is changed so often. why he finds it so difficult to come down on one side of the issuance of dust floating between both issues. -- instead of just floating between. >> there was a governor named barack -- a governor named rod blagojevich. >> he is a trail blazer and a hero of mine.
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>> that is how you describe the viral beating heart of the internet. >> more with andrew kaczynski tonight on "q&a." >> i think the fourth amendment can be construed to be a privacy amendment. the writing and search and seizure in your home, due process. i strongly think that the privacy protections that our founders took for granted in the internet and telecommunication age, you cannot take them for granted. yap the legislated to make it happen. the short answer of your question is i feel very strongly that the impression about yourself is yours unless there is a law enforcement reason or an overwhelming public good reason to go around privacy screen.
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>> congressman joe barton from texas on c-span2. >> looking ahead to the final two months of the presidential campaign. the panelists addressed the president's health-care plan, a voter aideed laws. it is about one hour, 15 minutes. >> for those of you in the boston globe outreach program who may now have never been into our beautiful building, i encourage you to consider becoming a member tonight. for those of our own members, death reminder that the end of our fiscal year is in a two weeks. -- a quick reminder that the end of our fiscal year is in two weeks. we value this collaboration with the boston globe. this is an inaugural event.
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we are so pleased that peter canellos was able to pull this together. i think when he first talked about it, he asked what it would be good. what about the night before the election? [laughter] they thought that might be a little extreme. i also want to tell you that following the election sometime in february or march, we will meet again here and talk about the results of the election in the same way. peter, we do not talk about you enough, except to say that you are the editor of the editorial column of the boston globe. he went to penn state, then he
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went to columbia to get a law degree. he came back to boston in 2009. again, he is a wonderful colleague and collaborator. i am turning the microphone to him. >> thank you. [applause] thank you very much. thank you to monica who put together this wonderful event. i want to welcome our subscribers who came as part of the insider program. there are many familiar faces in the audience. as some of you can see, we are taping tonight. people will be asked to write the questions on a piece of
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paper. there'll be people who can collect them. just to raise your hand and we will get your questions that way. what we are hoping to do tonight now that the conventions are over is have a discussion about where the state of the presidential election is right now. we had a discussion with a different group of panelists talking about mitt romney and other republicans who were running. now governor romney, our governor, is the republican nominee. he had his national debut down in tampa. that was followed by what most people consider to be a very successful democratic convention. it is a good time to take stock.
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i want to introduce our panelists. michaeleful to have grunwald, author of "the new new deal." mike and sasha issenberg are both former global reporters. -- globe reporters. they would cover politics and many other things. mike works at "time magazine." his book "the new new deal" is great. it is a real in-depth look at obama's stimulus bill and how to change the way we live and all of the political imaginations that surrounded it. sasha issenberg is also a former book writer as well. he wrote "the sushi economy para " it was about the interconnectedness of the cold economy -- "the sushi economy." it is about the interconnectedness of the global economy.
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he is a columnist for slate. he is also the author of "the victory lab." there is a new way of identifying and voter interest. our final panelist i think all of you know, charlie baker. he was the republican candidate in 2010. before that he had a very distinguished career as a foremost expert on the state budget and also a national leader in health care at the harvard pilgrim. he helped turn it around. no one is in a better position to talk about obamacare than charlie.
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we are grateful that he could join us. i wonder if we can have a discussion it here. i know that politics can be a little counterpointy. i took down some of the memorable quotes from the convention. i know some of you were not at your tv at all times. i will start with michael. paul ryan talked about the stimulus in his speech. he said that the money went to companies like solyndra and make believe markets. the stimulus was about croneyism at its worse. is that the stimulus that we see in your book or some other bill? >> i have learned a new word on
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twitter, which is "trolling me." [laughter] my book is a revisionist history. everything you think you know about it is wrong. certainly not everything paul ryan said about it is wrong. long story short, he focused on the crony capitalism aspects of it. they really did not find anyone doing anything wrong. the only inappropriate political pressure coming talk about the estimates project came out in my book. some poor guy was called into the situation room. that does not become big news.
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the republican memo cherry pick stuff out of my book that made obama look bad. for some reason, they did not mention those company. the reason paul ryan can talk about it this way is that the stimulus has become a political disaster for obama. they believed it created jobs and was lower than the percenge of americans that believe dell was was alive.
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a lot of people think of stimulus as the bank bailout. it is $300 billion in tax cuts that went to 95% of the country and less than 10% of the country noticed it. this is the purest and distillation of what obama meant by change. i use it as a microcosm of the obama story to show how he has achieved a thing is whether you like it or not. politically, it's become a joke. $800 billion of levitating trains to disneyland, ma but museums, snowmaking machines in duluth, condom machines, and all kinds of nonsense. this is just a metaphor. >> the title of your book, "the new new deal" suggested a
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massive government program that does a lot of things that republicans complain about. this did not set up massive agencies. it did not do that. somehow, the branding went wrong. maybe your book is part of it. when you say the new new deal, they think of it like a new-deal style jobs program which it wasn't really. >> i did not call it another new deal. it's a new new deal. it was a response to this economic and financial collapse, which the new deal was as well. the economy crashed 9% in the fourth quarter of 2008. those are depression numbers. that would be an entire canadian economy in 2009. then you have the best improvement in jobs in 30 years. of course, we approve -- improved from hideous to just that.
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that has been a rough sell. but what really has not come is that the legacy has changed. it is not that obama did not create big government. fdr already did that. this was, in fact, a lot of things. the house republicans voted for $715 billion stimulus. all right and voted for that one. stimulus787 billion was the death of free enterprise. it was not this kind of euro- socialism that has been conveyed. presidential candidates had the biggest stimulus plan. something happened on january 20th, 2009. i don't know what, but things like romney-care, the individual mandate, extending unemployment benefits, middle-class tax cuts, other things in the stimulus suddenly became politically toxic to republicans in
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washington. not around the country. there were plenty around the country that supported it. >> i do think that it's a key part of obama's presentation, even if he does not, the stimulus bill, but the idea that he inherited an economy does bleeding jobs to put a stop in the leak. but things have not necessarily taken off from there, but he stopped a depression. do you guys think people will take that seriously? will they give him credit for that? >> my view on it is that i think he committed the same mistake that a lot of people in public life commit. the zero were promised on what it could do. the whole point behind the stimulus was due from the unemployment rate below 8%. four years later, there are almost region recollection is we
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have two or 3 million people not working now than we have people now pursuing worker today. i think a, a lot of times, one of the things that has been very interesting in the difference between the public and private sector is that most of the time in the private sector, your objective with the constituents is to overpromise and under deliver. that is usually where you want to be. you do not want to overpromise and under delivered because then your customer leaves you, your employer, everyone. there is a lot that can go wrong there. in politics, people have a tendency to overpromise. i think, on this one, a lot of people over promised. and almost does not matter with in the details because people remember the big commitment that was made. they do not forget. >> this can be as committed to
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christina romer. >> and rahm emmanuel. that 8%. their idea was they thought they had put a jobs number on it. as charlie knows, unemployment is a lagging indicator. the report that they put together, they like to say that we nailed the delta. you can put that on your tombstone. [laughter] they correctly affected -- predicted that it would add 2%- 3% in g.d.p.. most independent economists put it at 2%-4%. unemployment went above 4% -- a% before the stimulus even started. they had all kinds of footnotes and caveats. nobody reads those. it was an epic political mistake. >> if you look back at the fact
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that there were plenty of things that the white house knew internally that they did not project with an honest lovell of despair and concern. obama said there was a long work to do but it did not feel like an inaugural address delivered at a time of an epic crisis. it was a legislative agenda separate from that thought was health care reform, capping trade. i think that is as exceptional a jobs crisis and it would have been a lot harder to go to congress to say let's spend time on things that are not directly affected by economic growth. they made a gamble trying to get the stimulus through as soon as they did to go to other things. it would have been really difficult if they had set the agenda for this one overarching need, short-term economic growth. >> this is a good segue into the next object here. this is a quotation from paul
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ryan. "college graduates should not have to live there 20's in their parents' bedroom looking at faded obama posters." >> i think you people -- you know people in that situation. some of them more obama enthusiasts. it is a much more far-reaching look at the different ways that campaigns can identify people who support them and get them out to the polls and find new ways to reach them. we all know that young voters were a huge table of the obama coalition four years ago. it was very noticeable. young people were active in politics. i did not notice a huge groundswell of young people, particularly when we were in charlotte. they canceled the outdoor acceptance speech which is what they did four years ago in
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denver. they invited people to go to reviewing party at the convention center in charlotte. i saw a mass of lineup of people. the 20-something's of charlotte did not want come out to sea barack obama. >> what are some of the things they can do to get the vote out? >> this is a big question, especially for tactician on the left that i write about in my book. the 2008 class, what can you do to mobilize them to vote again? one of the most interesting things are right in my book is the rise of the using drug trials for politics where boat -- where the voters are guinea pigs and you are able to do
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whatever you want to the medical subjects. you are able to measure in specific terms like cause and effect. we often. about elections being in this certain context to change people's opinion. i think we increasingly see it as a game of figuring out who can alter their behavior. a lot of these efforts that mobilization are sort of universal. there are things that arm formed by behavioral psychology, behavioral sciences, the best documented method of getting somebody to vote. they sent people a copy of their voting history.
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here is how you did in the last six elections. you did not vote in school board, city council, and here are your neighbors voting history. everyone would get an updated set. the increased turnout would be increased by 20% and would get the guy who sent out the mail and death threats. people have been trying to figure out how to soften this idea of social pressure, the idea that people want to live up to the idea of themselves as voters, fit in with their neighbors. one of the things, this collaboration of academics and democratic operatives figured out how to soften this. people on the left are using letters is specifically targeted at first-time voters in 2008 to have not voted since then, low propensity voters who have not developed habits of a voting.
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once people develop habits, you really do not have to do anything to keep on coming out. you may have to change their mind, but just sending a letter that says, "dear peter, public records said you voted in 2008. thank you for being a voter. there's another election coming up. i hope dr. words we can thank you again for being a good citizen. people on the lapper try to mobilize this coalition using these behavioral tools to motivate people. there may have been a fear six months ago there romney could have been a cost cutting can the did to have some persuasive appeal to get soft democrats who are disappointed in obama to defect. you can look at his polling numbers across categories and, by all calculations, he has failed to be that candidate. for people on the left, super not are they it is
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going to support us? but can we change their behavior and have them vote. >> before we move on from this topic. i want to give you guys a chance. this kind of dynamic that a lot people assume through tampa of was that the romney campaign is trying to run primarily on the kind of argument that you mentioned earlier. obama has not lived up to his promises. the economy is not good. gives someone else a chance. >> that would have solved the stimulus problem, by the way. >> ok. obama did not live up to that. the perception is that argument alone is not going to do anything. >> i agree. >> the republicans miss a big opportunity? >> they spent $100 million on
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negative ads in swing states this summer sort of refraining who romney is. they were enormously effective. they happen without any real organized response coming from the other side. one of the things i learned as a candid it is that races are partially about selling your story, making your case, framingham you are, but it's also about realizing the other side is going to do everything they can to frame u.s. something you do not think you are or you are not. my wife and i and my kids used to watch some of the stuff on tv during my race and they would just laugh. they would look at the tv and laugh. i would say to them, i know you think it's funny -- [applause] -- [laughter] very lot of people who do not know me from adam and probably believe it. >> that does mean to get to spend more time with your kids.
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>> the most interesting thing to me about the issue that sasha raises -- i found this out a different way. one of the things i did after the election, a democrat who is a friend of mine sent me karl rove's book. it's actually pretty breezy read. if you want to learn a lot about an interesting guy, it's worth it. when he was a teenager, one of the things he figured out there really sort of frame his whole life thinking about politics for the rest of his life was that there are a lot of people who are registered to vote who do not show up. if you just get your team to show up, you can win a lot of elections. i think this whole notion of behavior modification, targeting and all that, it's a huge issue. as social media becomes more prevalent and as more and more
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people -- i watch my kids these days and the way they work with technology and relate to it, it's completely different than the way my wife and i do. i think that will have a huge impact on how people go about trying to get their teams to show up. i'm not sure in the aggregate we're ever going to get more than 70% of the registered voters to show up. that creates a big opportunity for someone who can get their team to the poll. >> for obama in particular, the subtitle of my book is, "the subtitle of change in the obama era." team obama. everyone wanted to go vote for the guy. he was about help, change, excitement. some people sure they like being part of a crowd, like feeling like this is the cool thing to do. they are a part of a cause. obama is really struggled in
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that this time around. some of his advisers feel strongly that he cannot run on change again even though it tells this hidden story of everything that has happened because it would sort of feel like they're dancing in the end zone when americans are not feeling very happy about where things are. they argue about this stuff all the time. i've been very surprised. i do not know what the behavioral signs show, the ec that he has embraced the phrase obamacare. after a while, it was totally toxic but now he is starting to embrace the auto bailout and embracing things in the stimulus like middle-class tax cuts, doubling renewable energy. even though he does not say "stimulus." he has not come out and said, "change happened." i'm wondering what you think the signs are. >> i read about a whole bunch of innovations taking place in the last decade in politics.
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some that started happening a decade ago was because the tools came available from social sciences, commercial marketing, migrating into politics. it's not a coincidence as to what happened after 2000. politics was entirely in the shadow of florida and the narrowness of that election. it demonstrated two things to people who work in campaigns. one is how absolutely polarized the modern left person is. matt dowd starts writing a memo even before the supreme court ruled in 2000 looking ahead to the bush reelection in 2004. he said we're in a newly polarized country. this election will not be decided, as we have often thought, by battling over swing voters, moderate independents in the center.
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think back to the clinton years. this was the paradigm we thought of. he cited a statistic in their that in 1984 according to exit polling, 26% of voters had cast a ballot that included both a democrat and republican at different levels. by 2000, it was down to 7%. that's the environment we are in. parties have realigned. the democrats intend to vote democrat. it is -- they have thousands of datapoint about you. the sile one that is most productive is one party or registered. the bond that is most -- the one that is most predictive is how you are registered. the fact is that most people's
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both are highly predictable and campaign the know this. you cannot at the polls that any given day, but they average out at 48-46. you do the math. that is a% undecided and maybe there are a few points that are soft on obama who may be condensed to a defect to romney and soft romney supporter the other way. for the other side of the electorate, they change their behavior to motivate them to vote. >> there is a significant divide out there, but defining the divide is an interesting question. some people say it is social issues that divide people, lifestyles. the heartland have a different set of social values than people on the coast. others suggest that it something deeper at a moment's when there is global competition and there
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is so much economic insecurity because of the global competition that one answer to that is the democratic idea of shoring up the safety net making sure your pensions and health care are really strong. the other response to that is why should our fortunes be tethered to iran and the strait of hormuz where the greek debt crisis or whatever. we need to double down on main street and promote individual values. whether that is possible or not, individual enterprise, small business, whatever. there's something comforting about the idea that forces are being turned off and we're going to be doubling down on free enterprise, a community enterprise. what do you think? where is the divide? what is the divide over? >> all the above. sasha knows that most of those people who are working the
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campaign are trying to figure out which one matters the most to you. somehow they're trying to get to 51% based on how you cobble together the different groups. one thing i learned just talking in diners and people's backyards, all the rest, -- actually wrote about this after the election, but it is amazing. most voters care a lot about something, right? but the number of different some things that are out there is really big. [laughter] the economy is a really big deal, but i'm telling you. i was shocked at how many different things are fundamental the way people think about this. >> we have looked at the extent to which the values debate between the two parties came into really sharp relief. we sign no. republican speaker
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is quoted the "built it myself" who had -- where obama had talked about the importance of government investments in education and that no one is really out there alone. he said it in a way that suggested he was telling a entrepreneur is that they did not do it themselves and it was all society. the republicans really doubled down on that. i thought the most moving way was susanna martina's, the popular republican governor of new mexico. she was talking about a security business that her parents started. she said her parents grew back from 180 year-old guarding a. parlor to 125 employees in three states. there was helped along the way, but my parents took the rest. they stood up, and you bet they believe they build it themselves.
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that was really powerful, but the democrats seem to turn the tables on them very strongly. the more prosaic argument that bill clinton made was, frankly, we think we are all in this together as a better philosophy than your on your own. ashought obama's except speech was a little underrated, but he kind of addressed directly when you talk about the importance of free enterprise and his belief in it. he said we also believe in something called citizenship, a word of the very essence of our democracy, the idea that this country only works when we accept certain obligations to each other and to future generations. seeing democrats stepped forward and start claiming the founding documents, this is what the country is about, it really sets of a very high level philosophical mano y mano. what was your impression? >> when romney picked paul ryan,
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we were under the impression they wanted a philosophical debate. after the first 48 hours of that, i did not get the sense that the romney campaign was particularly invested in having a big debate about how austerity, the size of government, are making sacrifices today for long-term fiscal health, all the things we thought we going to get. >> it is about romney is really that courpure? >> they're flailing at the moment. the comments toward egypt and libya in the last few days and before that talking about the chicago school strike and trying to pin that on obama suggests that romney has given up on may be making this about job creation or the economy as they have said all year. it does not seem to sustain the ryan debate over the question of
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the size of government. i think we thought it was supposed to be a sort of aesthetic distinction between the parties. it does not seem like it was part of a broader argument that, either over the course of that week in tampa or since then, that the obama campaign -- >> do think they took it as the reason to have a broader argument on their own? >> i think they did. they have been getting ready to run against the ryan plan before we had any idea that he was near romney's short list. as charles was saying, the number of money spent trying to define romney was this very well planned, a deliberate effort during the summer to attack ronny's role at bain capital,
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his job creation record as governor of massachusetts and his personal finances and investments overseas. there's a gradual effort that has built a story that in the heart of his strength which was stipulated. basically, the argument might be good -- he might be good at being a shareholder, but he was not good for america and the workers. his success either is irrelevant your well-being or was predatory. it doesn't matter. i, as long as it's ambiguous enough to not put your confidence in him, we're fine.
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>> in fairness to ronny, ted kennedy never showed anyone tax returns and no one seemed to care. there was a bit of a double standard. >> is there a double standard? most presidential candidates have released more than romney has. years ofnow how many returns their release. show of hands, how many people ever remember caring one way or another if any of the presidential candidates released tax returns? [laughter] i do not think the romney administration was as prepared for that question as they probably should have been. one thing i learned as a candid it is because you think an issue
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is a good it does not mean it is. and is always interesting to me to find out what the other team will choose to focus on and when they will decide that the issue is over. that is an important distinction in races. everyone is human. the arbiters of what is news and what is not will give people the benefit of the doubt on something but will not give some of the same benefit. >> what romney did is allow the boy did to exist when talking about bain capital or the tax returns. they can allow media and the obama campaign people issued in -- interested in feeding this on
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a daily basis. he would say, "i want to talk about the economy." it's based on the underlying assumption that everyone knows i have been successful in business, but there was very little about what the voters knew to explain what that meant. he did not tell his own story about the olympics. he did not say a lot of specific things about the economy. we were talking about mitt romney and economy. >> he had created a problem for himself. as sasha pointed out, romney had to get through a primary.
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it was a very big primary. [laughter] he did take some positions in the primary. when you look at the polling, sometimes the democrats are popular and sometimes they are not. lately, democrats do better on foreign policies. romney have really gotten himself out on some limbs that he's had problems getting back. he says he wants to talk about the economy. that means that the economy's ups and he wants everyone to know about it. -- the economy sucks and you want everyone to know about it. getting specific only cause him
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problems. >> here is another issue where you get into a little bit of a specific problem. this one is for charlie. in mitt romney's except and speech, he said that he will repeal obamacare. there are two issues imbedded in there -- is obamacare really so bad that the republicans would take it on squarely when is it a democrat sneak in with the few more positive things about it? it's poll numbers are starting to go up a little bit. also there is idea that whatever our problems are,
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obamacare has not really kicked in. is that what is causing increasing health care costs? >> i used to write a blog at harvard pilgrim. >> it was great. >> i wrote that any reform plan would be better than the status quo. at the obamacare is worse than the status quo -- i think obamacare is worse than the status quo. it did not do anything about the fact we had a system where most folks have chronic illnesses and what they need is help with managing what i would describe as -- that is what health care services are supposed to be
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about. they got hit harder than anyone coming out of that legislation. it is going to increase the federal deficit. i do not come away with it think it is part of the answer. i used to write a lot of what i do instead. ok? this would be a good question to ask you, mike. i struggled with this issue a lot. so our reporters are wrote columns that my wife was pretty funny. how do you talk about policy matters in a serious way and at
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a level that is understandable and that the same time meaningful? what end up happening is that i would flop onto the ground and lose everyone. but if you talk about it up here, people criticize you for not being specific. >> i do not know. neither does barack obama. it is hard. i tell a lot of stories about what they're wrestling with in the white house. i am always talking about this stimulus. they thought they had a very simple message. we are doing tax cuts, but we are also doing spending. we are saving the economy in the short term, but transforming
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it in the long term with clean energy and lower health care costs and education reform and new economic order. we are doing stimulus now because we are in an economic emergency, but we will take it to fiscal responsibility later. we are cutting taxes for 95 percent of the population are raising effort to%. is a very simple -- raising taxes for the 2%. it is a very simple two-part message. many people say that bill clinton should be the secretary of explaining things. it does not seem to me like he is doing any kind of magic. he just has longer to talk and people were forced to listen.
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sasha and i are paid to watch this stuff. we know about some of these details and where people are fudging the truth. most people do not. the sound bites are incredibly powerful. >> charlie, can ask about health care? if you were a voter looking at these two candidate and your ronnie's a, i will be repealing -- you hear romney say, i i will be appealing obamacare -- would people upset about health care blame obamacare? when people think about going into the voting booth, wouldn't they say, we're getting rid obamacare, but he has not said
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what would replace it. the default becomes the status quo. how will this all end up? >> the big question is -- how many people will vote on the side of the federal deficit? that for me is my number one issue. i have three kids. i feel like i'm dooming them. i was brought up their traditional. -- very traditional. you try to make sure at the end of the day that all the bills are paid. that is the defining issue more than anything else.
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it is a no-brainer from my point of view. i think that depends to some extent on whether -- there is like, millions of variations on this theme. when you ask me what i think about the electorate on health care, there are a whole bunch of people will have pretty good coverage and big words. that is a pretty big number. there is a bunch of people who are in medicare. they worry a lot about their health care and about medicare. they are at an age in their
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lives were it is more important than it was 10 or 15 years ago. as we get older, health care becomes a much higher priority issue. i do not know how the back-and- forth of medicare will play out. i think for a lot of folks for whom medicare really matters, that will have a lot to do with where they decide. >> " you mentioned that bill clinton speech and elizabeth warren speech. there is a provision in obamacare that says 80% of what you take in has to be on a patient over care and not on administrative overhead. is that a winner? people are perking up their ears when they hear about that. >> in the massachusetts i believe it is 90% on the health care forum that passed. the answer is -- and this falls into what people pay attention to -- take a $1 billion and
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spread across the population that is involved. i think a few bucks. the way you get it is by doing an adjustment in the premium the next month. if the premium is a high to begin with and you get a small adjustment, you might not notice. you may not notice that. i do not know if people will notice. someone would have to put it out to them. that is the short answer. >> there is cynicism in the ability of washington to do anything in people's lives. i wonder if it is the
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administration or congress or any piece of legislation that could be credited by a large portion of population for improving benefits of people's lives because there is such lying cynicism about the institution. this is one of the themes of michael's books. especially the tax cuts that no one ever knew happened. you have the example of a rebate. if congress is pulling at the% approval rating -- 12% approval rating, it will never occur that any improvement in people's lives is due to them. have the democrats created a successful theme in --
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>> we are in a moment where they are philosophically opposed to government intervention in markets. that could include the government and big business. i do not think those are the assumptions. >> republicans accuse obama of representing the government. obama accuses romney of representing big business. >> that does not mean the voter has to choose one over the other. we should be clear. campaigns have debates. candidates have debates with one another the not necessarily targeted at change in voters' minds.
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there are limitations to what mitt romney can say in the role of big business. there is nothing untoward about that. and obama has constituencies in the labor movement. public employee unions are a huge part of the democratic coalition. they are a huge source of manpower going into election. there are certain things and he talks in abstract. >> people are very dissatisfied that the economy is bad. the only thing they are fixating on is the agenda in
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washington and the positions of the republican party. given that, obama is pulling ahead right now and the election was held today, most people feel like he would win. is there any concern or distrusting of corporations? big profits at the risk of the average guy? are the republicans attacking what obama's solutions are? >> i do not think in the electoral terms the debate has to be about that. i think right now, based on what we can tell from the polling, voters do not think the economy is so horrible that they will take up incumbent solely because of that, and/or they do not blame him fundamentally for the estate of the economy, and romney is an incredibly
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unpopular nominee who is not trusted on international issues. when the race is like that, there is a very small burden on obama to worry about anything else. especially on women's issues and reproductive stuff. >> i would push back on that a little.
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neither candidate has cracked 50%. it is clear that this notion of everyone loves him or not -- there isn't that. the president is an enormously likable guy. even if it over 60% of voters seem to think the economy is on the wrong track, i mean, he has done a good job of making the case that he inherited problems. he is trying his best. it will take a heck of a lot longer than he thought. he sold that.
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he spent billions of dollars on why mitt romney was a bad guy. that resulted in no deal coming from the other side. that was definitely a piece of work. you're talking about a race in which the states will decide the election. we will see. i do not believe it is anywhere close to where you believe it is. >> i have not seen -- >> the debates will be more important. the debates will be real important. >> if i could put on my policy dork hat on again, we have this polarized country. people who did not like obama from the beginning still do not like him. his numbers -- after the stimulus debate -- have been unstable.
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the tea party went crazy. revolution! health care! pular! how will this play? how will this play? it has been very stable. -- unstable. a couple of lessons sasha is writing about the mechanics of politics. some will just be getting people to vote. for policy, one thing it shows is that you can do a lot of stuff. you can do your agenda. my book is about this guy who did not have a lot of new ideas. they read the same old ideas, but he went ahead and did them. some of them were popular and some of them were not popular at the time. now it is this and this. the fact is whether he has been successful or unsuccessful.
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they have not changed his numbers. he still had 8% unemployment for god knows how long. he is still popular, but not too popular. he is at a decent position, but not a great position. the student loan thing, that is great politics. very stable things. as long as you have the power, you might as well do things rather than organizing -- agonizing over the politics. >> we have to invite people now to start thinking about their questions. we have 10 or 15 minutes. think about it. monica will collect questions. finish your thought. >> people do not know a lot about policy. it's complex. there is no good reason why even real educated voters know
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whether the market has a need for what they are doing. voters interpret policies through the lens of whether they like the party or the individual. you know, i do not understand how the health care industry works. i do not understand how insurance companies work. that is not my expertise. people who like barack obama thought that his health care plan was pretty good. people who did not like him thought it was pretty bad. it goes back to where the the understand -- whether they understand incredibly complex piece of legislation. voters need to feel if the
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person is on their side and not. >> people take their cues from their party leaders. for the deficit, you can just as easily imagine a democrat saying that the deficit is the biggest issue because look at what happened under bush and look at how paul ryan voted for every deficit this and that. for most voters, i do not like it because of those dirty liberals. >> we should go through these fairly quickly. i will nominate one person to answer because we have a lot of questions right here. the want to talk about the impact of the auto industry position for present obama and mitt romney. that is a really good question.
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in romney's words, the auto industry gets the elevator and the workers get the shaft. romney has established the midwest as a crucial battleground. obama is not the popular there. he has as of the industry bailout in his back pocket. mike, tell me, what will the impact be of of the industry bailout? >> it put michigan out of reach for running. -- romney. we agree on that. he is not trying to claim that he was for it all along. it is one of those things where you do not know. certainly the people who said
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that the government -- general motors would be doomed were wrong. you could see that the whole osama bin laden is dead and gm is alive. >> sasha, why have republicans push for voter identification? there are very few cases of voter fraud. there has been a large but identification laws that were pushed by right-wing organizations. a disproportionate number of minorities do not have cars. it will be difficult for them to drive out to the polling places. how will this play out?
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>> some of the electorate could be affected by it. individual pinpoint voters who lack ids, we contact them and sort of run a system to get them to physically get documents beforehand. it is a huge statistical challenge. >> it is a big problem for the democrats. >> they take it very seriously. >> quickly moving on. charlie, obama over promised and under delivered.
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to what extent is his underperformance is the republicans unwillingness to concede anything? >> obama had a super majority in the senate and had congress for the first two years he was there. >> no, he did not. four months. after spector switched and scott brown won he had 60. >> anyone who thinks he did not have the majority of this legislature and the bully pulpit is kidding themselves. he is not taken seriously in the deficit. he made a big spiel about stimulus now and cut the deficit later. some of us are still weighing in on that one.
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most people thought the budget he has submitted are now worth the income they were printed on. this is a message to the voters that he does not care very much about that issue. >> sasha, this one is for you. neither side references the supreme court. will more people be alienated if they bring this up in regards to social issues? the supreme court -- and they're literally have been abortion suits -- there have literally been abortion suites. -- suits. they were concerned about the akin comment. how serious is abortion? who wins? >> i think the voters know very little about the supreme court. voters are perceptible, -- persuadable, 12%-15%. lowe's a bit of research,
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information voters. frankly, they decide late because they do not pay attention or they are uninformed. they don't know how many states are in the union. they would not pass a citizenship test. the supreme court is an incredibly abstract concern. it is to be used for active as voters on each side. and they're now incredibly vivid and real debates that both sides are involved in. it could be bob gay marriage or reproductive rights. -- it could be about gay marriage or reproductive rights. >> next issue for mike. outsourcing -- how can we create american jobs in a global economy? gold economy, american jobs,
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the suggestion to me is that romney himself have various incentives to do things overseas. how would that play out? >> i am not sure what the question is? >> how can american job creators create jobs in america? just a reference generally to outsourcing. >> outsourcing -- no one likes it during a campaign. it is not a coincidence that even the romney and obama are both free traders, romney is running ads of obama of outsourcing wind turbines to china. we have in soars to wind turbines from the rest of the world. -- insourced wind turbines from the rest of the world. we have doubled our manufacturing content made in the u.s.
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romney is doing a lot of china bashing. obama accused him of not being enough of a china basher in the past. ultimately after the election is over, i think the status quo will -- >> most people in washington, i think, a majority think that the biggest problem we have with respect to international global competition is our corporate tax rate. it is too high. it is riddled with all kinds of exemptions. i thought there was a fair amount of agreement that one of the things that should happen is that we need to reduce our rates and their rid of those exemptions. it would make our tax cut
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generally simple, easy to understand, and more competitive. it is a shame that that idea was alive for about three weeks and they got lost. we do have the highest corporate tax rate in the world. it is a problem. >> this is a very good question for you. i thought bill clinton of's most compelling point was on romney's plan to lower taxes. he called for a major tax cut beyond what we how right now. what he said is backed -- lower taxes have to be economically neutral. by means of closign tax ofpholes without naming any them. clinton said this would impact the middle class inversely. the deficit is about our kids. romney will really increase it. that revenue would go toward the tax cuts. you do not even get to the
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current deficit. >> interesting. he has not really said anything, but he did talk about a new tax policy. >> he did not say it in the speech. >> in my view, people use the tax code to raise a lot of money to support candidates. that is what it is therefore. i think it is inefficient and anti-competitive. we need to fix it. i think romney would be more interested in fixing it than obama. look at obama's performance. he did not deliver on the things that he said he would deliver. he certainly did not deliver on any of the things that are important to me. >> can romney help convince independent voters of this
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without giving details? this tax cut plan covered by closing loopholes. is clinton correct that this plan is not possible? >> i am not sure about the latter part of it. adam romney has done anything to make this a debate over the specifics of that tax policy. -- i do not think romney has done anything to make this a debate over the specifics of that tax policy. he has done very little to draw attention to that. he has not engaged on that. when we want to talk about the economy, he sayswe should get rid of regulations and be more competitive. the things that can payments due to define the conversation in the terms that it wants -- the things that campaigns due to the fund that conversation in terms of what it wants, i do not think -- unemployment is where it is. the economy is bad.
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then they will look for an alternative. as i said earlier, i think you see a little bit of a romney flailing of it. he is trying to grasp that new-- at new issues. he decides to make this about big policy distinctions like we thought it would one month ago. we still have about six or seven weeks left in this election. we are starting to see the clues that romney is looking for a way to redefine the terms of this debate. >> one person asked me about the group and journalist. this is a left-wing kind of service or their rescinding ideas to journalists and stuff. i was never part of journalism. so that answers that. [laughter] ok, charlie, you're not a journalist, as he cannot answer this one. i think we covered most of the
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issues. we cannot get to all the questions. thto finish up, i want to give each of you a very brief chance to talk about what you think we will see in the next two months. >> then in february you apply what we actually said -- will play what we actually said. [laughter] >> what are some of the dynamics? >> i think the debates are very if you live in a swing state, you'll see a great number of ads, probably-. -- negative. >> we get a lot of them in new hampshire. >> the most interesting thing about the election four years ago was that most people thought it would be about iraq. on september 15, the world financial markets froze. everything became about the economy.
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we thought that this risk would be about the economy and not the personalities of the candidate. i wonder if what is happening in the middle east will turn into something much larger from now until election day. it can never tell exactly what it is that will create the context on election day. that might turn out to be a much bigger deal than we ever thought it would be. >> i was taught that their campaigns for operating on multiple levels. i wrote about how campaigns could e-books and really -- evolve and really committed differently with one household than their neighbors. there are more channels including targeted web advertising. a campaign can have a discussion with a set of individuals and across demographic individuals.
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it receives different behaviors. the day to day big news story we are talking about does not necessarily where the campaign is devoting their resources. there was back and forth yesterday about egypt and libya. that does not mean that obama was spending his money talking to people in ohio about what mitt romney was talking to people in florida about. be aware that they are missing the secondary, tertiary levels of conversations taking place. we might be surprised that the election was about something different than what we thought about. we're following it in the newspapers and on cable. >> i think it will be ugly. [laughter] it is interesting. it is unusual to have two
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candidates that have a positive message about america. there is no question that this is an extreme base and election trying to fire of people. -- fire up your people. that guy is scary. that guy is awful. not only that, the flip side of firing up the bass and trying to depress the other guy's base. i think there's going to be a lot of that. obama does not seem to want to run on his record. brummell we help him win the votes if he did. -- it would probably help him win a vote. and romney does not want to run on his plan other than things will be different. change we can believe in, i guess, because you need to believe. i think it will be nasty. neither guy seems to really like each other. whatever kind of breaks the were in 2008, whether it was
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because of the phenomenon of a black candidate in a general election for the first time or because of the circumstances of eight years of bush, i do not know. there were certain lines that were not cross. this time, i think there will be lines that will be crossed. >> well, on that note. [laughter] i want to thank everyone for being here. we have some wonderful books for sale. on "the newhas been york times" best-seller list. sasha's book gives you a great look at how campaigns are conducted. thank you. [applause] [captioning performed by national captioning institute] [captions copyright national cable satellite corp. 2012] >> we can keep investing in
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wind, solar, clean coal, and signs of that can harvest new biofuels. our construction workers can build homes and factories that waste was energy and retrofit old buildings. >> i'm going to take advantage of our oil, coal, gas, nuclear, renewable. north america will be energy independent within eight years. >> watch and engage with seized and as the presidential campaign moves towards the october debate. energy policy is likely one of the topics in the first 90- minute debate, october 3rd. audience questions in a town hall format on tuesday the 16th. foreign policy is the focus of the final debate, the 22nd. the vice-presidential candidate debate will be on the 11th. a key house and senate races looking at the control of congress. following our coverage on c- span, c-span radio, and online at
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>> i think the fourth amendment can be construed to be a privacy amendment, the right against search and seizure in your home without due process. i strongly think that the privacy protections that our founders took for granted in the internet and telecommunications aide to come you cannot take them for granted. you have to legislate them to make it happen. the short answer to your question is i feel very strongly that the information about yourself is yours unless there is a law enforcement reason or some overwhelming public good reason to go around the privacy screen. >> technology and privacy with congressman joe barton. monday night at 8:00 on c-span2. in two weeks, the first of the presidential


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